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Fitness: New approaches to running

“To run or not to run?” That is the question. It is the question many people ask themselves when deciding on what type of cardio exercise will help them get the fastest and most effective results.
Daylight savings time is right around the corner. With it comes longer days, nice warm weather, more time for outdoor activities, and a new outlook on fitness for a new season.
This time of year is a great season for outdoor exercise. The unbearable cold is pretty much over and the intense heat is still a few months away. March through May is a great period of time to make the most of the outdoors for some great running workouts.
Many people love to run. They truly do enjoy the peaceful high that comes from clearing their head while their favorite music plays on their headphones and their body enjoys a continuous release of exercise-induced endorphins.
But what if you don’t like to run? How can you get the great fat-burning results from running and still remain interested in it and invigorated by it every single workout? The answer: think outside the box.
Fitness is always a part of your life that you can customize to your likes and dislikes so that it works for you. Although principles and techniques may be set in stone, the type of exercise and the way that you do it is totally up to you.
If you like continuous challenges then try a new approach to running. Make it a competitive battle against yourself. By incorporating sprints into your running workout you will be recruiting more muscle fibers than regular jogging. This will get you better results at a much faster rate.
Here are three great programs for increasing the effectiveness of your running program so that you will be ready for those springtime races that have started.
Interval Runs
Start with a basic High Intensity Interval run. This method works great for when you are running for distance. It will not only help speed up your time, but also make the run much more fun and challenging.
Jog for sixty seconds, and then kick it into high gear for thirty seconds with a sprint. Take it back down to a jog for sixty seconds, then blast into another sprint for thirty seconds. This is a basic interval that will not only add a great dynamic to your run but also supercharge the metabolism. Keep up the basic slow/fast interval for the entire distance you are running or for a designated amount of time you aim to run. Before you know it the workout will be almost done!
Line Sprints
Designate lines or cracks on a track, football field, basketball court, a parking lot, etc. for three rounds of sprints. Begin by sprinting to the first line and quickly bending down to touch the line. Sprint back to the starting line again, then proceed to sprint again to the second line.
Return with a sprint back to the starting line. Immediately blast off with a sprint to the third line. Quickly touch it like the first two lines, and then return with a sprint back to the starting line. Repeat the sprints to the second line and the first line. Continue the routine until you reach your goal for the workout.
Crosscuts
Jog in a large open circle or square area for one to two minutes, making a full lap then sprint up the middle line that cuts across the area every time you reach the mid-point. For an extra intense workout sprint both ways each time doubling the distance. This is another form of interval training that will boost the metabolism much more so than conventional jogging.
Sammy Cusimano is the founder of Genesys Training based out of New Orleans, LA and has been a professional trainer since 2001. His experience with training clients ranges from competitive athletes to senior citizens. Cusimano’s goal as a trainer is to help clients safely reach their fitness potential and become the best version of themselves for overall health and wellness.

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